Finally, the provincial government has closed the loophole that allows “farmers” to build mega homes on farmland.
The previous legislation allowed one home to be built on farmland, without specifying a maximum size of the property. This caused buildings to be constructed that better resembled a hotel/motel than a family home, and appeared to be operated in many cases in a similar manner with the occupants not even related to the owner while at the same time not paying any property taxes and not taking into account the additional cost that this involves in providing municipal services.
Kevin Buttar’s plan was to effectively house four families, consisting of his grandparents, parents and brother plus his wife and child. In any other situation, that would mean four sets of property taxes versus zero, which in turn means that the rest of the community is subsidizing them.
In addition to the current legislation, perhaps the government should review the way property taxes are calculated and should consider introducing a poll tax, also known as a head tax, so that property taxes are based partly on the number of adults residing at that location.
Ken Harrap, Surrey